After scoring five goals in the first eight minutes Saturday, the Chesapeake Bayhawks offense was ice cold the rest of the way, dropping a 15-8 game to the Long Island Lizards on a sweltering night in Annapolis.
The Bayhawks (5-4) took a 5-1 lead with 7:37 to go in the first quarter, but they only scored three times in the game's final 52:37. The Lizards scored 14 times in that span to blow the game open in front of 7,793 fans at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium.
"We didn't play smart lacrosse," Bayhawks coach Brendan Kelly said. "But it wasn't an offensive or defensive thing, it was a team loss."
The eight goals were a season low for the Bayhawks, whose previous lowwas10 in a loss to Boston on June 25.
Ben Hunt got the Bayhawks on the board early, finding the back of the net just 42 seconds into the game. Long Island tied it up, but the Bayhawks scored four unanswered goals in three minutes — two from Danny Glading, and one each for Ben Rubeor and Brian Carroll — to take a 5-1 lead.
Former Johns Hopkins midfielder Stephen Peyser and Maryland attackman Ryan Young scored for the Lizards in the last five minutes of the first quarter to cut the lead to 5-3.
Hardy began the second quarter with a power-play goal for the Bayhawks, making it 6-3, but that was the only goal the team would score in the quarter.
The Lizards (4-5) scored three goals to round out the scoring in the second, two from Stephen Berger and one from Tim Goettelmann, to send the game to halftime tied at 6.
Despite a staggering advantage in faceoffs — the Bayhawks outdrew the Lizards 22-5 — the team was unable to capitalize on opportunities after its first quarter outburst.
Ben Hunt put the Bayhawks back in front at the beginning of the second half with a diving goal, but the Lizards dominated the rest of the period, scoring five unanswered goals to end the third with an 11-7 advantage.
"Personally, I think we ran out of gas," Bayhawks midfielder Dan Hardy said. "Hot day out, and they just took over."
The Lizards scored four times in the fourth, making it a 9-0 run before Rubeor scored for the Bayhawks, ending a scoreless stretch of 26:45.
"We were getting shots on cage," said Kelly, whose Bayhawks outshot the Lizards 27-24. "But we just couldn't finish. We need to finish."
Long Island goalkeeper Drew Adams, the reigning MLL Defensive Player of the Week, made 16 saves.
"We were taking stupid shots from bad angles," Hardy said. "Those aren't going to find net."
The Bayhawks could have clinched a playoff spot with a four-goal win over the Lizards Saturday.
"It's some of the pressure you put on 5-1, we start thinking about [clinching]," said Kelly, whose team has three games remaining in the regular season. "We fell into their game, and they beat us that way."